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A 17-year-old female asked:

is it true that cold weather doesn't give you a cold? and is there a difference between cold and flu? thanks in advance

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. John Froude
Infectious Disease 53 years experience
Yes and yes.: Cold weather does not in itself lead to viruses. It is possible that in cold weather people are in closer contact with each other which facilitates transmission of viruses. Flu is a potentially severe illness that causes high fevers, malaise, aches and pains and lasts five to ten days. A cold is much less severe. Both are caused by different viruses.
Dr. Christine Strohmeyer
Family Medicine 37 years experience
Yes: Colds and flu are more common in cold weather probably because the viruses persist longer and people are together indoors in more crowded conditions. Colds are caused by multiple different viruses such as rhinovirus and adenovirus and cause mainly nasal congestion and cough. Influenza is caused by different strains of influenza virus and have more systemic symptoms like fever, headache, and coug
Dr. John Froude
Dr. John Froude commented
Infectious Disease 53 years experience
Nicely written. Don't disagree at all.
Dec 28, 2014

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A 31-year-old member asked:

What are some OTC medicines for the cold and flu?

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Dr. Robert Kwok
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Many available: Adults' over-the-counter medicines for colds are ok to use if one follows the labels' instructions, stays below maximum doses, and is not using more than one medicine of each type. Fever/pain reducers include tylenol (acetaminophen) or motrin/advil. Cough meds include Robitussin (some people use dm, some avoid it). Decongestants and antihistamines include claritin-d, zyrtec-d, Benadryl +/- phenylephrine, sudafed.
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If everyone on the earth was quarantined for a period of 2 weeks or more, would the cold and flu disappear?

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No: The virus is carried in other animals such as birds and pigs.
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A 39-year-old member asked:

How can I avoid getting sick in the future and especially during cold and flu season?

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Dr. Danny Proffitt
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Many: Rest, fluids, avoid exposures to extreme heat or cold, perhaps some low dose vitamin c. The best of all is washing your hands, and wiping down surfaces and keeping your hands away from your face. If you are rested, hydrated, eating nutritiously, sleeping 8 hours, and using good hygiene, that is about all you can do. Hand sanitizers help. Avoid being around those you know are ill.
A 36-year-old member asked:

Please give advice on how to cure cold and flu?

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Dr. Jay Rosenfeld
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
No cure: There is no cure for the common cold or the flu. There are symptomatic medications that can help you deal with the symptoms but usually the virus just needs to run its course. For the flu there are flu vaccines that work to try to prevent the flu but they are not foolproof. There are also some medications that can be taken at the first sign of flu to shorten the course of it. Talk to your doctor.
A 46-year-old member asked:

Cold versus flu? What are the differences between cold and flu symptoms?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
Internal Medicine 41 years experience
The : The common cold and the flu are different illnesses caused by different viruses, but they share similar symptoms: cough, sore throat, sneezing, fever, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, chills, tiredness, diarrhea, and vomiting. Some general differences to look for: common cold:.

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